What's Coming for Abby and Summer

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Around here, our "family dinner" is breakfast and any time we spend together has to be before noon every day or my husband's day off  (usually a Friday).  I think it would be safe to say that if we didn't homeschool, Abby would see her Dad after school on Fridays for about 5 hours and for 2-3 hours Saturday and Sunday. 

With us, flexibility is a must and our school day usually starts when most kids are coming home from school...maybe earlier...maybe later. 

Here's what the girls will be up to starting in January.

Abby


Abby is currently 4 years old.  We finished Raising Rock Stars Preschool in November and have completed Units 1-6 of You Can Read (we initially began in December 2011), both of which are from 1+1+1=1.  Abby has always been eager to learn and I feel privileged to watch her grow and explore each and every day.

At this point, we are kind of caught in the middle in regards to her schooling.  She's advancing out of preschool type activities and showing interest in reading beyond sight words (ex. blending and short and long vowel sounds) while also seeking to be challenged in other areas.  While I feel she's ready to move along, I by no means want to overwhelm her and cause discouragement.

I began to look more closely at her learning style and personality.  Abby is a very happy, carefree, energetic and hands on little girl.  She's what Cathy Duffy would classify as a Wiggly Willy in her book, 100 Top Picks for Homeschool Curriculum.  Initially, I had my heart set on the Abeka K4 curriculum, but after reading her book, I discovered the curriculum would be at the opposite end of the spectrum for Abby in relation to her learning style.  The last thing I want is for her to be bored and dread our learning time together or to spend a ton of money only to find it doesn't mesh well with her.  I for one would probably enjoy it, but I learn differently than Abby. Ultimately, I have to do what's best for her.  After much thought and prayer, I remembered another program that had caught my attention last year and we will be starting the Confessions of a Homeschooler- K4 Curriculum in early January.

While the K4 program will be our base, I have added my own things I think Abby will enjoy, as well.  This is all subject to change, of course, if anything becomes too much or isn't working out.

- K4 Curriculum: This will cover music/movement, letters, numbers, phonics, art and many hands on activities.

- Draw Write Now: A simple activity to help her learn to draw, practice coloring (I know she will love..haha) and writing sentences.  I only want to introduce this and see how it goes.

- RoadTrip USA: This is something that can be used for many years, but this year I wanted to touch mainly on State names. If she learns more that will be great, but I'm not obsessing about it.

- RRSK: She will be revisiting the same Bible verses she learned with RRSP with new/challenging activities.

- YCR: We will begin Unit 7 and continue reviewing past units to keep her memory sharp.

- Themed Printables
- Learning games and toys
- Science

Summer


Summer is currently 5 months old and following in Abby's footsteps at being more than eager to learn and picking up on developmental milestones rather quickly.  Abby and I spend alot of time playing and introducing her to new things and she is not shy about telling us about how she wants to play, currently she prefers to be sitting and holding/shaking/banging her toys.

With Abby, I always made a point to play with her on a daily basis and challenge her as a baby to reach her milestones.  I had this weird notion, however, that I had to wait until she was 2 or 3 to start working with her on shapes, colors, letters, numbers, etc.  She naturally picked up on counting, colors, & shapes through play, but I still had this reluctance to teach her other things even though she was ready long before I began.  It wasn't until I was researching preschool ideas for Abby that I stumbled upon 1+1+1=1.  She had taken a Montessori style approach to learning with her small child she called Tot School and then the spin off-- Tiny Tot School with her youngest.  I felt like I had somehow done Abby a disservice by not having done most of the activities with her at a younger age.  They were simple, fun, exploratory type activities that I would have never thought a kid could learn by.  I knew with my next child I wanted to do this and she benefits tremendously already by having a fantastic big sister who loves sharing all her time and attention.

As for now, we will continue exactly as we have been, enjoying her before she's grown up which is happening all too soon and I have let go of waiting until a certain age.  I am looking forward to where the new year will take us in our homeschool journey. 








Preschool Corner- Review Week and Christmas

Abby is 4 years old and Summer is 5 months old.
 
Preschool Corner
 
It was touch and go for our final bit of review this past week.  We finished our writing practice of Letters Q-Z along with Bible verses.  We didn't quite finish our complete review of all her sight words, but I usually give her little pop quizzes randomly through the week and she does well..so I wasn't too concerned and was just ready for a break to be quite honest. :-)
 
We made a Giraffe family with her Zoobs and that was alot of fun for both girls.
 


 
Summer got her second tooth and has begun to bounce and scoot on her bottom to get to things. :-)
 
 
Abby wrapped a present for Gia the Giraffe to put under the Christmas tree.
 


 
And, Summer bounced herself to sleep while Abby and myself wrapped presents.
 
 
We spent time together with family.
 

 
And, Santa stopped by to visit the girls.


 Abby does such a good job sharing and playing with Summer.



She has been having a blast in the snow!

Sledding...


Making snow angels...


Preschool Corner- Review Week and Discover the Dinosaurs

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Abby is 4 years old and Summer is 4.5 months old.
Preschool Corner
This week we reviewed Letters K-P and the corresponding Bible Verses and sight words from Raising Rock Stars Preschool and You Can Read: Units 1-4.  We also went to an exhibit called Discover the Dinosaurs!
These are just a few things I happened to capture from her week.
Sight word practice game...

Building with her Zoobs...


Alphabet practice...

Candyland...


She really enjoys playing on the Kindle.


Summer "helped" her put together a Dora Christmas puzzle.


Abby always includes Summer in her reading time.



And, we made our favorite treats.  You can find the recipe here



It was a big week in teeth this week at our house!  Abby went to her first "real" dentist appointment and looks as though she will be losing a tooth in the next few months and Summer got her first tooth and looks to be working on a second soon.
Summer is becoming more and more interested in playing, especially looking at her books.


Abby kept decorating her snowman for Summer to explore, which kept her entertained for quite sometime.




And, we ended our week visiting the Discover the Dinosaurs exhibit and Abby had a great time!






Daddy showed Abby how to dig for fossils.







Summer enjoyed playing with Abby's new Stegasaurus named Sophia.


Preschool Corner- Review Week and Christmas Theme

Sunday, December 09, 2012

Abby is 4 years old and Summer is 4 months old.
Preschool Corner
This week we reviewed Letters A-J and the corresponding Bible Verses and sight words from Raising Rock Stars Preschool and You Can Read: Units 1-3 and also used these Christmas themed printables.  We are using the month of December to practice a routine by doing a review and enjoying the Christmas season. 
These are just a few things I happened to capture from her week.
We used her letter tiles and playdough to practice sight words.


Pattern practice...


Counting and number identification...


She worked several Christmas puzzles.


Our game of the week was Busytown: Eye Found It. 


She always enjoys her Measure and Mix set.


And, Little Summer is officially mobile!  She loves to roll.